Wednesday, March 17, 2010

War against Kings Cross rages on

If I have been neglecting Kings Cross news lately it's partly because I have been writing about it in The City News.

But there is plenty happening, with Council considering responses to its Late-night trading research.

Despite many comments including mine pointing out gaping holes in the research which fails to actually support Council's anti-pub agenda, Council is ignoring them and forging on regardless.

Clover Moore still wants to regulate into being a 'civilised' and 'sophisticated' late night culture, with bookshops and art galleries open till 3am, which is fine by me.  But you can't regulate civilisation and sophistication (putting aside that the latter word comes from 'sophistry' which I am sure Ms Moore did not intend).

No, regulation just bans things and I am more and more convinced that the very late-night monoculture Councillors complain about is the result of their own regulation plus the uncivilised nature of a minority of suburban yobs and thugs which, short of building a wall around the city, we will always have to put up with.

With almost all street life banned, and sniffer dogs everywhere, over-regulation has created a city where there is nothing else to do besides drink on a night out. The forced closure of the wonderful Quirkz venue in Marrickville is a case in point.

But Council wants even more power legislated by the state so they can really get stuck into the late-night economy.

Cr Chris Harris correctly thinks that Responsible Service of Alcohol rules are a joke, but wants a whole bunch of enforcers trained to patrol pubs and decide who can have a drink and who can't.

Give me a break, Chris. Half the current tension and violence is caused by endless security trolls ordering adults about. I for one go to a pub to relax and do not want to be supervised by some straight authority figure making arbitrary decisions about me. Their judgements will be no more objective than bar staff. The only way to do that is to breathalyse everyone who wants a drink. Is that the brave new world you want?

No, what should be policed is bad behaviour towards others, nothing more or less. I and my friends can consume any amount in a night and not become aggressive or troublesome. Get your moral panic off my back and off my town, Councillors.

Links to recent City News stories detailing all the new rules people want, and my comment on the alcohol research are here, here, and here for a very salient Graffito of the week. More being published tomorrow including an entertaining piece My Quiet Street and a comment piece in The Hub.

Oh, and Council continues to block Cowper Wharf Road in Woolloomooloo to protect the genteel citizens of Macleay St from the horrors of car hoons, despite one of the residents who spoke on the late-night-trading research saying that the blockades "hadn't really worked". But Councillors are simply ignoring that, along with anything else that doesn't fit their temperance mindset. If you read My Quiet Street, linked above, you'll see why we have little sympathy for the residents of Macleay St!

Picture: A KX nightclub ad from 1964. A swinging place to rendezvous indeed.


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Bobby said...

Thank you for your up-date. It is important not to trample all over the rights of people even if you are trying to look after their own health. It is in no ones best interest to have civil liberties infringed upon and governmental control tighten around the necks of the public like a vice. Having pub patrols deciding on who may and may not drink is a frightening prospect. Thank you for bring this to our attention.